Next Article in Journal
Change of the Rainfall Seasonality Over Central Peruvian Andes: Onset, End, Duration and Its Relationship With Large-Scale Atmospheric Circulation
Previous Article in Journal
Scale-Dependent Reliability of Projected Rainfalls over Bangladesh with the PRECIS Model
Open AccessArticle

Independence of future changes of river runoff in Europe from the pathway to global warming

European Commission, Joint Research Centre (JRC), 21027 Ispra, Italy
*
Author to whom correspondence should be addressed.
Climate 2020, 8(2), 22; https://doi.org/10.3390/cli8020022
Received: 14 January 2020 / Revised: 23 January 2020 / Accepted: 25 January 2020 / Published: 27 January 2020
The outcomes of the 2015 Paris Agreement triggered a number of climate impact assessments, such as for floods and droughts, to focus on future time frames corresponding to the years of reaching specific levels of global warming. Yet, the links between the timing of the warming levels and the corresponding greenhouse gas concentration pathways to reach them remain poorly understood. To address this gap, we compared projected changes of annual mean, extreme high, and extreme low river discharges in Europe at 1.5 °C and 2 °C under Representative Concentration Pathways RCP8.5 and RCP4.5 from an ensemble of regional climate model (RCM) simulations. The statistical significance of the difference between the two scenarios for both warming levels was then evaluated. The results show that in the majority of Europe (>95% of the surface area for the annual mean discharge, >98% for high and low extremes), the changes projected in the two pathways were statistically indistinguishable. These results suggest that in studies of changes at global warming levels, the projections of the two pathways can be merged into a single ensemble without major loss of information. With regard to the uncertainty of the unified ensemble, the findings show that the projected changes of annual mean, extreme high, and extreme low river discharge were statistically significant in large portions of Europe.
Keywords: climate change; warming levels; river runoff; extremes; emission pathway; LISFLOOD; Europe; PESETA project; climate adaptation climate change; warming levels; river runoff; extremes; emission pathway; LISFLOOD; Europe; PESETA project; climate adaptation
MDPI and ACS Style

Mentaschi, L.; Alfieri, L.; Dottori, F.; Cammalleri, C.; Bisselink, B.; Roo, A.D.; Feyen, L. Independence of future changes of river runoff in Europe from the pathway to global warming. Climate 2020, 8, 22.

Show more citation formats Show less citations formats
Note that from the first issue of 2016, MDPI journals use article numbers instead of page numbers. See further details here.

Article Access Map by Country/Region

1
Back to TopTop